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MOVEMENT CONTROL FOR HORSES

Posted: 31/3/2009, 20:07

Subject: FW: MOVEMENT CONTROL FOR HORSES DUE TO AFRICAN HORSE SICKNESS



FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: 30 MARCH 2009

PRESS RELEASE: MINISTER OF AGRICULTURE IN THE WESTERN CAPE, COBUS
DOWRY

RESTRICTIONS ON HORSE MOVEMENTS INTO THE WESTERN CAPE DUE TO OUTBREAKS
OF AFRICAN HORSE SICKNESS THROUGHOUT THE REST OF SOUTH AFRICA

The Chief Directorate of Veterinary Services in the Western Cape has
announced that a restriction will be placed on all horse movements to
the Western Cape African Horse Sickness control area from all other
provinces, with immediate effect.

These restrictions have been instituted due to the increasing number of
reported and suspicious cases of AHS in the rest of South Africa. Horse
owners are thus strongly discouraged  from attempting to move horses
from anywhere in the infected zone into the Western Cape control area as
the risk of transmitting the disease is increasing daily. An outbreak in
the AHS control area can potentially result in the death of many horses
as well as place our export status in jeopardy, possibly leading to a 2
year ban by the EU and causing major financial and physical losses to
the equine industry as a whole.

Consequently horses may no longer move directly into the Western Cape
AHS control zones from anywhere in the Infected zone, but will have to
stop-over for 3 weeks in Beaufort West under the supervision of the
State Veterinarian there. All such movements and stop-overs must be
coordinated with him. The local State veterinarian at origin of the
horse must also give approval before the horse can move. Horses must
still comply with the AHS protocol for movements prior to leaving any
such restricted areas.

Western Cape Veterinary Officials  warns that this is the highest risk
period in the year for AHS and horse owners in close proximity to
outbreaks throughout the country are strongly advised to:-
* stable their horses overnight or move to high lying areas if
possible, from 2 hours before sunset until 2 hours after sunrise while
the midges are active,
* to ensure all horses are correctly vaccinated, especially if
they are in high risk areas and not stabled
* ensure horses are also treated with insect repellants daily.
* obtain permission for all movements from their local State and
Private veterinarians, and to ensure that the movement is approved by
the State veterinarian Boland if it is into the Western Cape.
* Not move horses into the Western Cape AHS control area unless it
is absolutely essential and has been arranged in advance with the State
Veterinarian, Boland.
* Contact Dr. Pienaar (Tel: 023 414 2154) to organize a compulsory
3 week stopover in Beaufort West if the movement is unavoidable.

Your co-operation in assisting us to implement these movements controls
and thus potentially  to prevent an outbreak of AHS in the Western Cape
Control area is greatly appreciated.

Enquiries can be directed to the State Veterinarian Boland Tel: 021 808
5026  / 5253.
  Fax: 021 808 5125

ENQUIRIES: ALIE VAN JAARSVELD
                     084 604 6701

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